Open Educational Resources Grant and Support Program for the Faculty of Law

Western Faculty of Law instructors, you can apply now for one or more of your 2024-25 courses.

The OER Grant and Support Program offers in-kind supports and up to $20,000 in instructor funding to integrate OER into teaching. The program is a partnership between Western Libraries, the Instructional Technology Resource Centre, Centre for Teaching and Learning, and Western Research’s Knowledge Exchange and Impact Team.

OER are educational materials — such as textbooks, casebooks, videos, and test banks — that are openly licensed and freely available for anyone to use. OER can be tailored to the unique structure and context of a course. They can also reduce student financial barriers by removing the need to buy commercial materials.

$20,000 is available across three categories:

Category Available funds per grant What's required
Create $7,500 Create or develop a new open textbook, casebook, or other open educational resource.
Adapt $5,000 Identify and customize an existing open textbook or other OER to better align with your course. This includes creating an updated or localized edition of an existing open textbook, or creating supporting materials such as test banks, slide decks, videos, or interactive media.
Adopt $1,000 Identify and use an existing open textbook or other OER for your course.

Grant recipients have access to in-kind supports from Western Libraries, the Instructional Technology Resource Centre, and the Centre for Teaching and Learning. Some in-kind supports require that co-curricular learning opportunities tie to one or more course or degree program milestones.

Applications are due by Monday, March 13, 2023 at 11:59 p.m. EST.

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Any instructor from the Western Faculty of Law can apply, including instructional teams, instructional assistants, and staff in educational roles.

Co-curricular learning includes, but is not limited to, Western-sponsored learning opportunities that fall outside the traditional classroom. For example, learning skills development, library instruction, or experiential learning.

Applicants are encouraged to identify instructor and/or student collaborators in their applications. Each instructor will receive a grant for only one project on which they are the designated lead.

Projects that depend on additional grants to move forward will only be considered if the additional grants have already been confirmed.

Funding guidelines

Grant funds will be available to successful applicants in May 2023, to be spent by April 30, 2024. Projects must be completed and ready for use during the 2024-25 academic year.

We expect to fund a maximum of three projects in a single category, with projects from a variety of disciplines. The number of grants depends on the types and quality of applications received.

Eligible expenses include the costs of labour and expertise needed to adopt, adapt, or create an OER, beyond the in-kind support provided by program partners. This includes paying students and research assistants, editors, or copy editors. Funds may also be used to pay for software.

Ineligible expenses are hardware, conference registration, or travel costs. Teaching release is not covered by this funding, nor are faculty and staff salaries.

Evaluation criteria

A panel will evaluate all program applications using a standardized rubric. Criteria includes:

  • Applicants’ commitment to Open Education with demonstrated knowledge exchange plan to share the project within and beyond Western University.
  • Potential impact and benefit to students (including, and in addition to, cost savings).
  • Evidence of need for OER on identified topic (applies to adaptation and creation categories).
  • Feasible project scope, timelines, and budget.
  • Special consideration will be given to projects that aim to support or put equity, diversity, inclusion, and decolonization into practice.

Read the full Evaluation Rubric.

Expectations of grant recipients

  • Communicate updates, decisions, and required supports to your Western Libraries program liaison.
  • Attend cohort calls to share project updates and learnings with other grant recipients (one call in each of the summer 2023, fall 2023, and winter 2024 terms).
  • Release adaptation and creation projects with the appropriate license (e.g. Creative Commons license) to allow others to freely retain, revise, reuse, remix, and/or redistribute content.
  • Deposit in Scholarship@Western and the eCampusOntario Open Library, and in other open repositories as desired/appropriate.
  • Adhere to guidelines and best practices for accessible resources.
  • Submit a final assessment at the end of the funding cycle (in May 2024).
  • In-kind supports

In-kind supports

Available for all projects:

  • Choosing, designing, or adapting instructional approaches with the resource (e.g., self-directed learning activities and assessments; organization and sequencing of topics or information).
  • Creating, assessing, or redesigning course or lesson learning outcomes.
  • Locating additional existing, open license resources.
  • Explaining copyright and Creative Commons licensing.

For adaptation and creation projects only:

  • Creating digital media (available from the Instructional Technology Resource Centre for projects connected to courses or achievement of program milestones).
  • Using Pressbooks open publishing platform to migrate or create text content.
  • Metadata, repository deposit, ISBNs, and/or DOIs.


Email Stephen Spong for assistance.

Drop-in office hours to discuss project ideas, receive advice, and learn more or ask questions about open education will be hosted February 28 at 11 a.m. and March 9 at 2 p.m. Register to receive connection details.

Interested applicants that need help identifying OER to adopt or adapt can also attend the upcoming workshop about Finding and Evaluating OER on February 23, 2023 at 1:30 p.m.